I’m not a fan of speculating who will buy newspapers that are on the block. But I’ll make an exception with some quick thoughts on Tribune Co.’s publishing group — currently attracting investor interest as expected but likely months away from actually being sold.
The buzz has gotten buzzier with reports that David and Charles Koch are interested bidders and would infuse the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune with their conservative political agenda.
I don’t think that is very likely to happen for a simple reason. It would be a bad business move, running a high risk of alienating news staff, readers and advertisers. And say what you will about the Kochs’ big-money political offensives, these guys are supposed to be savvy businessmen, right?
Duke professor James T. Hamilton in his 2004 classic “All the News That’s Fit to Sell” applies economic theory to the industry and chose as his lead example the rise of nonpartisan newspapers in the late 19th century. Read more